Minnesota Cuffs & Collars Report – November 18th, 2016
District 1 – Baudette area
CO Ben Huener (Roseau) reports violations for the week included multiple hunting over bait cases, including one individual caught hunting over bait for the third time. One individual encountered was caught killing a deer without a license, but instead possessed the tag of someone else (illegally).
CO Eric Benjamin (Warroad) reports enforcement action was taken for hunting deer with the aid of bait and operating an ATV on a closed trail.
CO Nicholas Prachar (Baudette) spent much time working deer hunting activity but also some time checking anglers at public waters accesses. They’d decided that it was too warm to hunt, so they might as well fish.
CO Jeremy Woinarowicz (Thief River Falls) is looking for information regarding the unlawful taking of a bull elk in the East Park Wildlife Management Area west of Middle River. The animal was shot and left to rot. Information can be given to the Turn in Poachers hotline at 1-800-652-9093, where you can remain anonymous and eligible for a reward.
CO Demosthenes Regas (Blackduck) spent time checking deer camps, investigating TIP calls, assisting a local police department with an accident/DWI arrest, and investigating trespassing complaints.
CO Kyle Quittschreiber (Blackduck) provided assistance with the arrest of a convicted felon who was deer hunting with a firearm.
CO Hannah Mishler (Baudette) spent the week checking rifle deer hunters.
District 2 – Bemidji area
CO Tom Hutchins (Crookston) investigated several deer hunting-related complaints.
CO Dan Malinowski (Fosston) completed mandatory training and responded to a fire call. Wildlife calls included a car-kill moose.
CO Tim Gray (Bagley) took complaints about deer being shot off the road, hunters harassing each other and cattle farmers, and a canine charging a deer hunter after dark.
CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji) worked with CO Regas on a deer overlimit case where four untagged bucks and a rifle were seized. Charges are pending in the case. He also responded to a call about an individual shooting a deer with the aid of a light and leaving the area. It was determined the deer was shot and loaded into the vehicle. Blood samples were taken.
CO Brian Holt (Bemidji) investigated TIP complaints, and the officer assisted with a work detail in the area.
CO Chris Vinton (Perham) and several other COs assisted multiple agencies with pursuits where occupants of the vehicle fled into the field.
CO Al Peterson (Osage) followed up on reports of baiting deer, shining, trespassing, and taking big game from the road right of way.
CO Gary Forsberg (Pelican Rapids) reports a hunter reported that a member of their party may have accidentally mistaken a stray cow for a deer and shot it. A check of the free-ranging livestock found no harm to the animals. The shooter was happy that it was a miss. The rules of firearms safety were covered with the shooter for the next time a cow wanders by.
CO Angie Warren (Detroit Lakes) received a call about an injured swan. Hunters were assisted with a possible wounded deer in Hamden Slough. CO Warren also responded to a vehicle crash.
CO Bill Landmark (Moorhead) investigated a bald eagle that was shot with a rifle near Gary. Anyone with information in regards to the eagle is encouraged to call the DNR TIP line at 1-800-652-9093.
District 3 – Fergus Falls area
CO Troy Richards (Fergus Falls) observed some deer hanging with the hide left on for over a day. Hunters need to take care of harvested deer right away due to unseasonably warm temperatures.
CO Tricia Plautz (Henning) assisted local law enforcement agencies with a young boy who had left home and was walking along a state highway.
CO Paul Nelson (Elbow Lake) focused work efforts checking deer hunters and waterfowl hunters.
CO Shane Osborne (Evansville) checked deer and waterfowl hunters, fishermen, and ATVers.
CO Mitch Lawler (Alexandria) reports a TIP call from a concerned citizen led to multiple citations being issued for various deer hunting-related violations including unlawful party hunting, lending/borrowing licenses, and untagged deer. Muskie fisherman were monitored.
CO Jeff Johanson (Osakis) continued to work the firearms deer season, checking hunters and camps and following up on complaints and investigations.
CO Tony Anderson (Morris) worked road-hunting complaints, and a TIP call was handled about an unregistered/untagged deer in Traverse County.
CO Daniel Baumbarger (Glenwood) investigated complaints about deer overlimits, baiting, shooting from the road, lend/borrow, early shooting, and trespass.
District 4 – Walker area
CO Paul Parthun (Lake George) took enforcement action for taking deer without a license, taking deer over bait, transporting illegally taken big game, transporting loaded firearms in a motor vehicle, failing to validate site tags, failing to register deer, and possessing untagged big-game animals.
CO Eric Sullivan (Walker) worked big game violations that included lending and borrowing a license, hunter harassment, and trespassing. He also assisted Hubbard County with a lost hunter.
CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) took enforcement action for transporting a loaded firearm, unregistered deer, no ATV registration, no watercraft registration, PFD violations, and ATVing during closed time.
CO Jeff Halverson (Staples) worked the deer season, investigating complaints about trespass, road hunting, and shining.
District 5 – Eveleth area
CO Darrin Kittelson (International Falls) and a COC report having another busy week with firearms deer season. Complaints were answered for operating ATVs during closed hours.
CO Marc Hopkins (Tower) investigated trespassing, illegal dumping, wanton waste, untagged deer, and illegal firearms discharge.
CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked public waters and trespass complaints and the officers dealt with unlawful OHV drivers encountered while working hunters.
CO Mark Fredin (Aurora) reports many trespass violations throughout the week. Some of the complaints are that hunters are on railroad lands, driving or walking along the railroad grade. Hunters are using the railroad grade to access land down the tracks. Trespass complaints also were taken for hunters’ illegally accessing mine lands. CO Fredin and CO Murray worked a case in the Brimson area where a deer was shot off the road, and after a search of the area the road hunter was located. A check of his cabin partners hunting in stands resulted in three citations for hunting over bait.
CO Matt Frericks (Virginia) spent time following up on and investigating trespass complaints. Several deer hunters were contacted on area mine property. An investigation of a person who was posting state land as his own was completed, with a citation being issued. Numerous reports of people shooting at deer from the roadway were taken.
District 6 – Two Harbors area
CO Sean Williams (Ely) reports violations included failing to validate big-game tags, hunting without a license in possession, and operating an ATV during restricted time.
CO Marty Stage (Ely) worked on some fall deer-baiting cases and continued checking whitefish gill-netters. The whitefish run is slowing down, but it might just be due to persistent warm weather. The officer has found that the gill-netting rules seem to have been ignored for quite some time, but compliance is definitely improving.
CO Darin Fagerman (Grand Marais) reports that it was hard to tell if deer season was going on or not. Very few hunters were in the field. Enforcement action was taken for riding ATVs outside of deer-hunter hours, drive ORVs on snowmobile trails, and for failing to remove bear bait stations within 48 hours after close of season.
CO Mary Manning (Hovland) followed up on a couple situations in which folks have treated public lands as their own – in one case constructing a shelter, cook area, and bed frames from surrounding trees, and in another driving over a berm blocking a closed roadway and preparing a building site.
CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) primarily worked deer hunters along with checking a few grouse hunters and whitefish netters.
CO David Schottenbauer (Silver Bay) worked area trapping complaints this week. Time was spent working a few trespassing complaints as well.
CO Thomas Wahlstrom (Tofte) responded to calls related to state park and ATV violations.
CO Don Murray (Two Harbors) worked a busy second weekend of the deer season.
District 7 – Grand Rapids area
CO Randy Patten (Northome) took enforcement action for a felon in possession of a firearm when prohibited, taking antlerless deer without a permit, transporting loaded firearms in a motor vehicle, transporting illegally taken big game, and operating ATVs during closed hours.
CO Mike Fairbanks (Deer River) took enforcement action for license issues, transporting loaded firearms, and burning prohibited materials.
CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) took enforcement action for multiple untagged big-game animals, failing to validate a tag, lending and borrowing a license, illegally transporting a big-game animal, falsely applying for a license, shooting from a motor vehicle, shooting at a big-game animal with the aid of a light, shooting from a roadway, and trespassing.
District 8 – Duluth area
CO Caleb Silgjord (Brookston) reports hunting over bait has been a continued problem in the area, and many hunters were visited on the stand for making the choice to hunt baited areas.
CO Andy Schmidt (Duluth) followed up on deer-baiting complaints as numerous cases were made involving bait. Deer carcass-dumping complaints along state and county land were handled.
CO Jeff Humphrey (Cromwell) and CO Staples assisted Carlton County with a water-related rescue incident on the St. Louis River. An injured/sick bald eagle also was transferred to a rehab facility for care.
CO Scott Staples (Carlton) assisted with the search for and rescue of a person who fell out of his canoe on the St. Louis River and was stranded on a rock in the middle of the river.
District 9 – Brainerd area
CO Karl Hadrits (Crosby) handled issues of trap tampering and an abandoned vehicle on a WMA.
CO Patrick McGowan (Pine River) worked a busy deer season. Many TIP calls were received and investigated.
CO Jim Guida (Brainerd) took enforcement action for two separate groups of waterfowl hunters who overlooked their PFDs. Water and air temperatures are beginning to cool and one group capsized their hunting watercraft and were soaked.
CO Amber Ladd (McGregor) investigated a deer camp with illegal party hunting, tagging and registration issues, and he also worked deer-baiting cases.
CO Bob Mlynar (Aitkin) followed up on several TIP calls resulting in enforcement action. Weekends take on a glum mood when firearms are seized, prime land is shut down to hunting for the remainder of the season, fines and restitution values are discussed, license revocation looms, and “first deer” stories become tainted.
CO Sam Hunter (Park Rapids) received a call about a turkey hunter last week (the season ended in October).
CO Randy Posner (Brainerd) investigated a complaint about dumping in the Pillsbury forest.
District 10 – Mille Lacs area
CO Dustie Speldrich (Willow River) continued to investigate deer-baiting cases. Hunters were cited for the violation and their firearms were seized. It seems many hunters don’t realize that upon conviction of hunting over bait, the firearm or bow is forfeited, they lose their hunting privileges for one year, and that comes with a hefty fine.
CO Dan Starr (Onamia) is working on a litter case in which a large amount of refuse is being left under deer stands on state land.
CO Bret Grundmeier (Hinckley) reports one group of hunters tried to get away with shooting deer in the middle of the night while driving down the road. Unfortunately for the poachers, a property owner watched the illegal activity and helped officers.
CO Eugene Wynn (Pine City) assisted the State Patrol and Pine County deputies with several instances of people fleeing in motor vehicles and fleeing on foot from motor vehicles. A suspect from one of these incidents later was seen driving the vehicle from which he first fled deputies. The suspect and a passenger were stopped and arrested for outstanding warrants.
District 11 – St. Cloud area
CO Chad Thesing (Albany) reports a father hunting with his two juvenile sons did not believe he needed deer licenses for his kids because they were under 16.
CO Joyce Kuske (Little Falls) worked multiple cases of illegal lend and borrow of deer licenses. The usual lend and borrow scenario was a wife or girlfriend that registers a buck but doesn’t hunt.
CO Todd VanderWeyst (Paynesville) fielded calls concerning hunting regulations pertaining to juvenile hunters, public lands, and deer disposal questions.
CO Paul Kuske (Pierz) assisted the sheriff’s department with the investigation of a person who was found shot and deceased on his property while hunting. If anyone has information regarding the Terry Brisk case, please contact the Morrison County Sheriff’s Department at (320) 632-9233. CO Kuske also investigated TIP information about a person who was taking extra deer. CO Kuske found the person to be in possession of a used deer tag, all cleaned up and nicely folded with his license. When asked why he had the used tag with him, he couldn’t remember. Asked if he was planning to try to reuse the tag, the response was, “Oh no. I won’t do anything like that.”
District 12 – Princeton area
CO Rick Reller (Buffalo) reports one harassment case involved a neighboring hunter calling in about a baited deer stand, which was investigated by CO Reller. It was revealed that the reporting hunter placed the bait under the neighbor’s deer stand to get him in trouble. It was done because the reporting hunter didn’t like the neighbor hunting on the property line.
CO Mike Krauel (Milaca) handled numerous TIP calls about shooting from the road and about trespass. One individual learned the importance of telling the truth after he admitted to more crimes while trying to cover up shooting a deer from the road.
District 13 – West Metro area
CO Brent Grewe (Minnetonka) spent the week checking deer hunters and waterfowl hunters, and following up with complaints.
CO Vang Lee (ELCOP) took TIP complaints and answered questions from the Asian community about deer-hunting regulations.
CO Chelsie Leuthardt (Prior Lake) assisted neighboring officers with a deer-shining detail and an investigation of illegal party hunting.
CO Thephong Le (ELCOP) completed a follow-up on a CWD case that involved the importation of big game from Colorado.
CO Leah Weyandt (Mound) reports several hunter-harassment complaints have been investigated including someone target shooting with what sounded like a semi-automatic rifle during prime deer hunting hours in the shotgun zone.
District 14 – East Metro area
CO Vuthy Pril (ELCOP) responded to a couple of calls about injured animal and answered individuals’ questions throughout the week.
CO Tony Salzer (Ham Lake) dealt with several individuals not wearing blaze orange and target shooting in the Carlos Avery WMA. Target shooting in wildlife management areas is not permitted.
CO Joe Kulhanek (Hastings) responded to TIP calls that involved hunting deer over bait and a deer shot at night.
District 15 – Marshall area
CO Jim Robinson (Slayton) investigated a house shot by pheasant hunters.
CO Ed Picht (Montevideo) worked multiple complaints about road hunting during the week.
CO Craig Miska (Ortonville) reports many hunters expressed their displeasure with road hunters.
CO Matt Loftness (Marshall) reports one investigation during the weekend dealt with a landowner who watched as a neighboring hunter shot at a deer directly in line with his house and the slug lodged in the window sill of the window he was looking out. Luckily there were no injuries. Enforcement action was taken.
CO Luke Gutzwiller (Madison) assisted Chippewa County with an incident that involved a vehicle’s back window shot out by a hunter.
CO Andrew Dirks (Redwood Falls) is investigating two separate incidents where large bucks were found dead and both appeared to have been shot from the road and left. Anyone with information is encouraged to call the CO.
District 16 – New Ulm area
CO Jeff Denz (Willmar) followed up on trespass complaints.
CO Nicholas Klehr (Litchfield) spent time checking on deer carcasses that were dumped.
CO Jen Mueller (Hutchinson) addressed issues with wetlands and public waterways.
CO Thor Nelson (New Ulm) is investigating two fires set in Bashaw Township on Nov. 13. One was set in the middle of the Bashaw WMA and the second in a field south of the WMA. CO Nelson is encouraging anyone with information about the fires to contact him.
CO Dustin Miller (Windom) reports enforcement action was taken for hunting over bait, transporting loaded firearms, trespassing, ATV violations, and a DWI arrest.
CO Eric Schettler (Fairmont) investigated fish-overlimit cases.
District 17 – Mankato area
CO Brent Ihnen (Waseca) assisted with the search for a missing 12-year-old girl.
CO Jamie VanThuyne (Mankato) responded to numerous TIP complaints, worked with neighboring officers on an investigation, and assisted local agencies with the search for and rescue of a missing person.
CO Corey Wiebusch (Mankato) checked anglers on area lakes and rivers.
CO Jeremy Henke (Albert Lea) reports numerous violations that appeared to be more common the closer it got to the end of the deer season, as hunters were getting desperate to fill a tag.
CO Chris Howe (St. Peter) spent time looking for a missing child, who ended up being found by deer hunters.
District 18 – Rochester area
CO Mitch Boyum (Rushford) received a call about a road-kill buck leaning up against the St. Charles High School building.
CO Tom Hemker (Winona) found nonresident hunters using resident deer licenses.
CO Phil George (Rochester) checked deer hunters and took complaints about trespassing and shooting deer from a roadway.
CO Kevin Prodzinski (Wabasha) reports the final week of training with a COC. Enforcement action for the week was taken for hunting big game with the aid of bait, failure to tag a deer, failure to validate a deer tag, and multiple antler-point restriction violations.